Links to the readings can be found in our on-line reader.

ECS 188 – Ethics in an Age of Technology – Fall 2010 – Phil Rogaway

Class How we spent the class Reading/HW due today Comments
#01 0F 9/24 Introduction. Watched 30 mins of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth. Surprise! Nothing due on our first day of class. See Monday’s slot for assignments due Monday. Etc.
#02 1M 9/27 Quiz 1. Discuss the Pooley reading. See more of “An Inconvenient Truth” Read the course information sheet.
Read “We haven’t done a damned thing” by Pooley
Eric Pooley will speak on The Climate War in 1002 Giedt, 6:00 pm. (Sadly, it looks like few people went.)
#03 1W 9/29 Quiz 2. Discussed the reading by Barbour Read “Views of Technology” by Barbour Class moved to 267 Olson.
#04 1F 10/1 Quiz 3. Discussed the readings of Barbour and of Heilbroner. Read “Do Machines Make History?” by Heilbroner Please read something about the people whom we are reading. It’s never hard to find.
#05 2M 10/4 Quiz 4. Discussed the Winner reading. Read “Do Artifacts have Politics?” by Winner If you have time, please also read S4, “Do Politics have Artefacts?”
#06 2W 10/6 Quiz 5. Discussed ethical relativism and utilitarianism. Read “Philosophical Ethics” by Johnson Nametags!
#07 2F 10/8 Discussed utilitarianism, deontology, and rights. Read “Technology and Happiness” by Surowiecki If you have time, also read S6, “Happiness: has social science a clue?” Transcripts of three lectures by Richard Layard
#08 3M 10/11 We watched Dekalog, part 1 Start “The Question Concerning Technology” by Heidegger The film link in the left column is clickable (thanks, YouTube!)
#09 3W 10/13 Guest visit: Prof. G. J. Mattey (Dept. of Philosophy, UCD) (1) Finish “The Question Concerning Technology” by Heidegger.
(2) Prepare Quotes from this reading (recall that you need to typeset your writeups).
#10 3F 10/15 Discussed Dekalog. Discussed your projects. Write a one-page analysis of the film we saw in class on Monday, Dekalog, part 1. Identify one significant point you think the filmmaker is trying to make with this work and discuss it. If you need to watch some or all of the film again, there is a link in the table entry for Monday’s class. .
#11 4M 10/18 Quiz 6. Discussed the Jonas reading. Read “The Altered Nature of Human Action”, by Jonas. As you read, identify at least three beautiful quotes. Think on them, understand them, and come to class prepared to discuss them. You do not need to write anything up. A helpful vocabulary list for today’s reading.
#12 4W 18/20 Quiz 7. Finished Jonas, and discussed the Joy and Kurzweil readings. (1) Project Milestone 1 (project proposals) are due at 11:59 pm this evening. Send it by email, one email per group. (2) Read  “Why the Future Doesn’t Need Us,” by Joy. (3) Read  “Promise and Peril” by Kurzweil. .
#13 4F 10/22 Quiz 8. Discussed the McLuhan reading. Read the Marshall McLuhan interview. Some vocabulary for the reading. Deadline for Milestone-1 revisions.
#14 5M 10/25 No quiz! Discussed the Friedman reading. Read “The Lexus and the Olive Tree” by Friedman. Tuesday, 10/26, some of went to see “The Social Network” (here’s a parody of it).
#15 5W 10/27 Quiz 9. Discussed the Chang reading, then watched the first 4 chapters of The Corporation. Read “The Lexus and the olive tree revisited” by Chang. “The Corporation” is available in full on YouTube
#16 5F 10/29 We watched more of “The Corporation” Read “A Road Map for Natural Capitalism” by Lovins et al. .
#17 6M 11/1 Discussed the LLH reading and “The Corporation”. (1) Finish The Corporation (we’re at around index 7:00 of Chapter 11)
(2) Write an Analysis of the film.
#18 6W 11/3 We discussed the video and readings. (1) Watch The Spill (PBS, 54 mins, aired 26 Oct 2010).
(2) read H19, A Brief History of Offshore Oil Drilling (Natnl Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill).
#19 6F 11/5 Quiz 10. Discussed the Therac-25 accidents. (1) Read S35, The Therac-25 Accidents by Leveson. (2) Know the title you want to use for your project. .
#20 7M 11/8 Quiz 11. Discussed Morgenstern reading and some of the other individuals students read about. (1) Read “The Fifty-Nine-Story Crisis” by Morgenstern.
(2) Read about and come prepared to discuss the story of some other “moral exemplar” whose work has focused on science, engineering, or technology. Here are a list of possibilities. You may choose someone else if you like. Roger Boijsoly, Rachel Carson Shiv Chopra, Alan Cox, Fred Cuny, Enid Mumford, Vandana Shiva.
#21 7W 11/10 Quiz 12. We discussed the basics of copyrights and patents. (1) Read H22, “Thomas Jefferson Writes a Letter” by Boyle.
(2) Identify which other chapter(s) you are most interested to read from Boyle's book, among Chapters 3, 4, 5, 6, and 10.
If you have no background on patents and copyright, I suggest you start off reading Chapter 1 of Boyle's book (16 pages). Grab it from the on-line reader.
#22 7F 11/12 Continued discussion of Boyle (IP) Read your assigned chapter from Boyle, and come to class prepared to teach it to the rest of us. .
#23 8M 11/15 Finished Boyle discussion. Discussed the ethical codes. (1) Read the ACM Code of Ethics, IEEE Code of Ethics, SE Code of Ethics
(2) Write a paragraph enumerating one more more specific criticisms of these codes of ethics
#24 8W 11/17 We discussed scenarios from Baase. Read H21, “Computers, Ethics, and Collective Violence” by Summers and Markusen .
#25 8F 11/19 Quiz 13. Discussed the readings of Summers/Markusen article and Schmidt (1) Milestone 2 due
(2) Read H32, “Disciplined Minds” by Schmidt
#26 9M 11/22 Discussed the two readings. (1) Read H26, “The Transparent Society” by Brin
(2) Read H4, “Five Things we Need to Know About Technological Change” by Postman
#27 9W 11/24 Discussed the Margolis and Fisher reading. Read H31, “Unlocking the Club House” by Margolis and Fisher .
#xx 9F 11/26 Thanksgiving holiday No class! No class!
#28 10M 11/29 Group 1 (Ben, Brian E)
Group 2 (Jack, Jameson, Ryan)
Read p1.pdf and p2.pdf .
#29 10W 12/1 Group 3 (Aaron, Harish)
Group 4 (Gary, Jason)
Read p3.pdf and p4.pdf .
#30 10F 12/3 Group 5 (Barney, Karl)
Group 6 (Kyle, Max)
Read p5.pdf and p6.pdf .
#F 11F 12/10 Final (1:00 - 3:00, 267 Olson)
Group 7 (Cody, Jonathan)
Group 8 (Justin, Remington)
Group 9 (Brian H, Max)
Read p7.pdf, p8.pdf, and p9.pdf video clips of Jacob Bronowski